What you do in your house is worth as much as if you did it up in heaven for our Lord God. We should accustom ourselves to think of our position and work as sacred and well-pleasing to God, not on account of the position and work, but on account of the word and faith from which the obedience and the work flow. ~ Martin Luther

Monday, July 31, 2017


This person got tired of NOT painting.

This is what you see when you look down on the bridge.  

Still evidences of porch painting, I see.


Thanks for taking our photo, Rebecca!

Almost done... a hot and tired boy takes a break.

And after the hike, swimming!  

A lot less hot and tired now!
Aunt Rebecca let us borrow her underwater camera- which is just TOO fun!

We took two group photos (you know, in case anyone had the audacity to blink) and I love them both because I just love Andrew's little shadow right up front and center.


Lookie, lookie at what we got done before the weekend...

 The kids and I grabbed the bull by the horns on the first dry day last week and painted porch spindles and railings from morning until evening- getting the whole porch done in time to surprise Papa when he got home from work.   (Reason # 3,972 for having children: many hands make light work.)  There was plenty of Johnny Cash and JJHeller being belted out from children and Mama at different points throughout the day-and a bit of Gone Away Lake to keep our sanity.  We were paint splotched from head to toe by the end and our knees and wrists were sore (or maybe just mine because I am an old lady...) but it's DONE!!! (Hallelujah!)

When Matt pulled into the driveway, we all stood waiting expectantly for his amazed expression but he didn't even notice the porch pulling in!  That had more to do with the caliber of his day at work than the finished product; when he finally realized the porch was done, his reaction was well worth the effort.

The day before the reunion, the children and I played hookie with some family/friends and took a road trip to The Watkins Glen Gorges for the day.  I think everyone would agree: hiking and swimming is a much better way to spend a day than preparing for a party. And everything wound up getting done in plenty of time on Saturday morning anyway.

The waters were murky due to all the recent downpours and flooding.  But, truth be told, we are all a bit murky these days.  Our hometown was hit especially hard with rains (in one night it rained 7 1/2 inches!) and many people have been affected with flooding and water damage- some losing their homes, some salvaging their homes through the silt.  So we won't hold that against Watkins Glen.  Still so beautiful.

At the reunion, I served marinated chicken and home-grown steaks (trying to empty out our freezer in time for another cow to go in it this fall), jalapeno popper dip with veggies and tortilla chips, summer squash casserole, marinated cucumbers, cream puffs and blueberry pie.  (When I heard about all the other desserts people were bringing, I decided to put the lemon meringue pie on hold for another day.) Everyone else brought even more food (to much deliciousness to describe); my parents-in-law grilled the best corn on the cob you ever did eat, the highlight of the reunion every year.

Of course, I got no pictures of the food because- well, once the party starts silly things like that don't happen. But I *did* get a picture of all the girls in their matchy matchy outfits.  Which makes me supremely happy.  Barefoot beauties, all in a row.  Love it.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Another Romper (or two)

This Saturday is the Newman reunion we host every year.  And, well, I'm not ready.  At all.

I am making progress on the outfits I wanted to sew for all the girls.  When I get them done, maybe I can start thinking about the food.  And, with five children, who would clean the house ahead of time ANYWAY?!?  That most definitely needs to happen at the very.last.minute.

I finished Colette's romper which I love almost more than Ineke's.  I just love the pretty lace on it.

  Here is a sneak peek of the finished romper with Ineke modeling it.

I do hope to get a picture of Colette wearing it but you know how busy hosting can be...I almost never bring out the camera when there are people to see me.

I used the same pattern for this romper as I did for Ineke's (Simplicity Vintage Baby 1600) but heavily modified it for the look I wanted.  The "look" was decided upon when I saw this a.dor.able romper on Pinterest.  Seriously?!?!?  Aren't they the cutest?  Every single version I've seen!  So I copied it as best I could.

I was going to make a dress for Adele' since she is my dress girl.  I was thinking one like this.  (Again, it would have been fudged.)  But the girl has her heart set on those trendy rompers that are cool these days.

We had a conversation about it which went something like this...

Adele' with an air of wistfulness as she sighs: " Oh Mama...I do wish I could wear one of those rompers that girls my age wear too.  I'd like that dress, but oh...I wish I could wear one of those...I've always wanted one of them."

Me:  "Yes, I know you love girl rompers- but so many of them are super short...I don't know if I want you wearing something super short like that.  Little girls are a different story but you are getting to be a big girl now..."

Adele', with more than a hint of desperation: "Well, that's just it!  You can sew the shorts so they won't be so short.  And anyway... I am going to be NINE this year.  I don't have very much 'little girl' time left and then I'll be too big and I'll NEVER be able to wear a romper in my whole LIFE!"

Me (thinking): "Now that is just unfair.  And boy, is she goooooood."

So a romper it is.  (Because she has so little time left!)

I will be using the free romper pattern from Purl Soho, modified to have a look more like this and this.  Hopefully, all will go well.  I still love the dress.

Corynn (because she's all cool and grown up now) wants a shirt like this and a hairband for herself and one for her cousin.

And then that fabric will be all used up except a few scraps that I probably won't want to see for a couple years.  ;-)

That was on the agenda today but I didn't get completely done.  Hopefully, I'll be done all of the sewing tomorrow so I can pack away the sewing stuff and get cooking and cleaning.   (Lots of food to make, but I am mostly thinking about the desserts: cream puffs as well as blueberry and lemon meringue pies.)

And there may also be some painting.  Matt wants to paint the railings of the porch.  Twice over.  By SATURDAY.   In between raindrops (which are coming down every few hours or so).

And have you seen the size of our porch?!?

That's a lot of spindles, my friends.  A WHOLE LOTTA spindles.

It will be nothing short of a miracle if they are painted by Saturday.

And I am pretty sure I have never dreaded anything more.

Oh yes- I am still on my Great Depression kick as far as reading goes.  That (in the picture above) and A Square Meal are keeping me pretty busy right now during the few minutes I have to read before I conk out each night.  ;-)